Dye Autos Denver Area Truck and Automotive Blog
Buying a pickup truck (or car) can be an arduous process…but with a little planning and a simple checklist, you can lessen the time spent.
We’d like to make buying a pickup truck as quick and painless as possible.
Here’s a list of the items to bring with you to help speed up your shopping process and get you in and out with minimum hassle.
1. Your driver’s license
You need to be a licensed driver to drive the vehicle off the lot. The driver’s license also serves as identification for your lender, your check or other forms of payment.
2. Proof of auto insurance
To drive a pickup truck off the lot, you need to prove that you have insurance on that car. You can call ahead and set up the new insurance policy if you know which pickup truck you are buying. Or you can call from the dealership and give your insurance company the new car’s vehicle identification number (VIN). Your insurer will provide coverage details to the dealership and your lender. In some cases, however, all the dealer requires is for you to show that you have a current auto insurance policy.
3. Your trade-in vehicle and ALL that comes with it
- Certificate of title (if you don’t have it, the DMV can tell you how to get it replaced). Note: if you have an outstanding loan on the vehicle, this will not apply since the bank has your certificate of title.
- Current registration.
- All your car keys, accessories that came with the car and the owner’s manual.
- If you still have a loan on the car, you’ll need to have your account number or a payment stub.
- Maintenance records. These help support your claims about whatever prior damage your car has had and the repairs it has undergone.
Pro Tip: Before you visit the dealership, be sure to take these important steps to get the most for your trade-in:
- Use online tools to appraise your car’s value. Edmunds.com and kbb.com are two great resources to appraise your trade-in’s value.
- Be honest with yourself about your car’s trade-in condition. The more forthright you are when using online appraisal tools, the better off you’ll be when it comes time to trade it in. Very often, people come into the dealership with an overly-optimistic idea of what their car is worth, only to find that reality is less optimistic.
- Give your trade-in curb appeal.
- Clean the exterior and interior well.
- Remove small dents.
- Fix window glass defects.
One of the most popular questions we get from our customers when they’re trading in is, “Should I detail my vehicle before I trade in?” The quick answer is yes, but there are important factors to keep in mind. Read more about taking the right steps to detail your trade-in here.
4. Your Payment: how will you be paying for the pickup truck?
Payment can be made by check from a bank or credit union.
When the dealership is handling the financing, the down payment can be in the form of a cashier’s check, a personal check or even a credit card payment. To find out what forms of payment the dealership will accept, call ahead of time and ask to speak with a finance manager.
If you plan on financing your pickup truck, it’s a good idea to have these ready:
- Last two recent pay stubs (if you have more than one job, bring the stubs from those as well)
- Proof of residency (any current utility bill should do, such as water or electric)
- List of references (not including anyone living in your household)
- Your credit score (read more about how to do that here). The higher your score, the better your financing terms will be.
Pro Tip: We strongly recommend that pickup truck buyers get pre-approved financing, even if they intend to finance at the dealership. We have an easy way to get pre-qualified at Dye Autos. Just click >>here<< to fill out our online form.Read More
Every pickup truck shopper is looking for a vehicle that fits his or her specific needs. After all, there’s only so much research one can do online. There comes a point in every buyer’s journey where you need to experience the vehicle(s) you’re considering. The test drive is the #1 way to determine which pickup truck is best.
Buying a pickup truck without a test drive is like buying shoes without trying them on. Except, you can easily return the shoes – not so much with a vehicle.
Importance of a Test Drive
Once you’ve driven a vehicle off the lot, your choices are limited, says Alec Gutierrez, the manager of vehicle valuation for Kelley Blue Book. Buying sight unseen increases your chance of buying the wrong vehicle. Most auto experts still recommend an extended test drive on a variety of roads.
The simple fact of the matter is, used pickup truck reviews can tell you a lot about a vehicle, but only so much as to narrow the field. They can help you decide what, out of the many different types, makes and models, you should focus on, so you don’t have to do all the legwork on your own.
The problem is that the evaluators aren’t actually you – they can’t predict what little (or big) things will matter to YOU. The test drive is how you determine what options you need…and which ones you don’t.
How to Conduct a Good Test Drive
Comfort and Function
Considering how much time the average Coloradoan spends in their vehicle, it’s important to make sure it’s comfortable and functional.
- Is it easy to get in and out of the vehicle?
- How does the seat feel? Are you able to find a comfortable position?
- Is the pickup truck the right size for your needs (compact, midsize, fullsize)?
- Can you easily see all your mirrors and gauges? Are there any obstructions that make it difficult for you to see?
- Are there enough seats to comfortably fit your family?
- Standard, extended or crew cab?
- Standard or long bed?
- Will it haul your stuff?
- Are you planning on towing a trailer? Check towing capacity.
The feel of a pickup truck on the road and your ability to maneuver with ease is just as important as how comfortable you are in the seat. When you get behind the wheel and head out, make sure to replicate your daily driving experience. For instance, if you spend a lot of time on the freeway, take it out on the freeway to get a sense of how it will perform.
Here are some additional things to pay particular attention to:
- How smoothly does the pickup truck ride?
- Is it a quiet ride or is road noise an issue?
- Does the vehicle respond quickly as you steer?
- Are you comfortable with how quickly the pickup truck accelerates when merging into traffic?
- When you brake, is it jerky or smooth?
A Test Drive is Key to Buying the Right Pickup Truck
The test drive is a crucial step to finding the right pickup truck, the one that will make you happy, as opposed to the “best truck” that reviewers rate highest. It will be worth it to spend this extra time now, because a vehicle is a long-term investment. You’re probably going to have this pickup truck for a few years, possibly even a decade, and spend thousands of dollars on it.
You’ll be glad you spent the extra half-day making sure your decision is the right one.
At Dye Autos, we’ve helped thousands of pickup truck shoppers with their test drives. We can help you – no strings attached! Give us a call at (303) 286-1665 or fill out our easy contact form here and we’ll be in touch.Read More